Week 10: Experiencing True Bruin Welcome
Day 47: So when I was back at UCI, the RAs had their Hall Meetings. Ya know… the one where you talk to your residents about expectations and everything in between. However, UCLA isn’t just about House Meetings. We also had All-Hall meetings where the residents in our building get to meet their Resident Director and Assistant Resident Director along with the RAs and RGC members.
Day 48: So I didn’t really know what Yield was, but I learned a few things about it when I volunteered to serve food at the Yield Reunion lunch. Baby Bruins being welcomed to the community has allowed the opportunity to have people they can connect with.
Day 49: So check this out. My obsession with programming has taken a new step in it. One of the committees I am on for the year is Programming Board. We met for the first time this week and it was really cool to meet some of the student leaders who are really invested in another part of ResLife. It’s really cool because it’s another new experience for me — on top of all the new experiences I’ve been having at UCLA so far. So one more thing. I totally didn’t get to go to the event but UCLA was able to bring two of the actors from “13 Reasons Why” (Netflix TV show) for a panel, asking questions on mental health. I just thought it was really cool, but can’t speak more because I wasn’t able to be there.
Day 50: Not gonna lie… I don’t think I remember what I did today. My calendar has a large blank space, which means that I was probably doing hella administrative work because Welcome Week doesn’t really give you an opportunity to do so. Though! One weird thing about this day was that all the residents and RAs and RGCs started classes… but I’m just chilling in my office not worrying about having classes. Isn’t that nice.
Day 51: So a big part of my job is advising the RGC team and to a certain extent, I was pretty confused. What cleared out most of the confusion was when we met with Leadership Development where I took lots of notes that explained lots of what was happening in this area of my job. This was a really productive day of meetings and it ended with me going out with the best friend, Robert, cause why not. We still go out, we young.
Weekend: OFF! Went home to spend time with mother.
Week 11: New Resident Government Council Members
Day 52: “Meet the Candidates” Today was a lot more stressful than I thought it would be because there was so much to it all going to one event. Yes, it’s super weird for me to say that it was stressful and there was a lot going to an event because programming (event planning) is one of my top skills. However, this wasn’t just another program because there was so much going to this particular one as this would be an event that Courtside would gain its new Resident Government Council (RGC) members from — and all I wanted to see was the program succeed. Thankfully, it did. It was after this event at 11:30pm at night where i felt — for the first time — that I was finally succeeding at my job.
Day 53: “SunSprout Welcome Cruise” Because one large scale program wasn’t enough, we’re hitting it with our court’s welcome program the day after. The best part about this program is we had all hands on deck from Professional Staff of 5 buildings, RAs and RGCs working the event. Who knew I’d become a mixologist? No worries, no alcohol involved.
Day 54: Part of professional staff experience is we get to take part in a committee. Mine is Programming Board. I know; I just can’t stay away from programming. I fascinate myself in my commitment to Programming Board. Anyway; today I got to meet another group of students that I get to co-advise. I don’t get to program myself, but I love having the opportunity to serve as a mentor to some very committed and articulative in their positions.
Day 55: I spent about 3 hours of this day in meetings and I went home early. I am proud of me for going home early.
Day 56: Today was my Work Wifey’s birthday and I was up early enough to decorate her office to surprise her. Today was also the day where Courtside was finding out which RGC members were elected. I spent about an hour tallying up the votes and calling the elected candidates to welcome them into the position. Then I also had the other half of it where I had to reject the non-elected candidates, and that was hard. Then we took our team to dinner, because let’s have everyone get to know each other! Yay! Oh also, my mom is staying over for the weekend!
Day 57: I was working on a Saturday for RGC Training Day 1. Today began with a lot of frustration because of miscommunications and unpreparedness that i was not ready to be dealing with so early into the day. Nonetheless, the day went on and we were able to engage the team in more team bonding and lessons to learn. Even though I had to have a conversation with them about being on time.
Day 58: I was also working on a Sunday because… RGC Training Day 2. We started today with Social Justice training. We are very big on training our teams to be social justice aware of their surroundings and other scenarios to introduce them to a part of the core of ResLife. Today, they were also in training sessions for time management, conflict mediation, effective communication, and ethics. Ethics was my personal favorite, but I was very happy with the kind of information they were trained on.
I may have lost most of my weekend to RGC Training, but at least I got to bond with my team AND got to hang out with my mom.
Week 12: The First Full Week of Work Without Training
Day 59: Today is my first day of our famous “Marathon Monday meetings” and I’m not sure how I survived tonight, but at least I did. I went from 5pm to 10pm and survived RA, RGC Cabinet, RGC Association, and all Sunset Village RGC Cabinet meetings. How I didn’t fall asleep during these meetings, I will never know.
Day 60: My RD finally convinced me to be out of office for working too much, so another ARD and I took a trip to Universal Studios and spent the day there. However, I couldn’t keep away from work and ended up going to the office after returning from Universal to read emails. One thing I learned from today was how much I loved my job. Turns out, being away from something you really love makes you feel some withdrawals. It made me really grateful that I have the chance to work in a field that I love.
Day 61: It is my first week experiencing what the system really looks like when programming proposals hit the radar of Programming Board. For such a young committee, this system has been created very well. The system is very productive and has a lot to it. A lot more of the questions that I had not expected the students to be ready with. After PBoard, Courtside had its fire drill. S/O to us because we were the fastest building to evacuate residents (as of when we did the fire drill).
Day 62: Today was my first experience being at a Residential Education Meeting. So there’s ResLife, where there’s hella people and then there’s ResEd made up of ARDs, RDs, ACs (Area Coordinator), and ResEd Director. We are in meetings for a total of maybe one-fourth of the week, but I genuinely enjoy this time because we no longer get to see each other on a day-to-day basis without ProStaff training. You get to really missing the people you work with but don’t see that often.
Day 63: “Courtside Welcome Program” My big programming day has come. Meet the Candidates was a big deal to me and it’s success added a lot of pressure internally for Courtside’s Welcome Program. I spent this entire day prepping to make sure all things were ready for this program. Leave it to me to be overly prepared and still have things go almost down a hell hole. It’s probably sounding a lot more dramatic than it really was, but you have to to understand that I excel in putting pressure on myself to do only the best and beat myself up for things that go wrong. Then again, many people understand this feeling. At the end of the day, I’m just extremely glad it was successful overall and had guest appearances for the Hitch Sites and Delta Terrace ARDS.
Week 13: Re-Discovering New Things
Day 64: Know how I said I went home at 10pm last Monday because of marathon meetings? This week, I got to go home an hour earlier because the all Sunset Village RGC meetings only happen every three weeks. One hour earlier out of meetings is another hour earlier to watching more Arrow (that’s the current show I’m binge watching).
Day 65: Student Affairs is a big field but it’s also a small field. I know that sounds weird to say, but to a person who is new to the experience… I feel quite small next to people who have been in the field for a VERY long time. I’m fascinated by how many different aspects there are to Student Affairs and just how much everyone is different.
Day 66: “Major Blast 2017” UCLA’s Academics on The Hill puts together an event called Major Blast where they bring out a majority of the academic departments to help students either decide on a major, add a minor or major, or really anything related to their major. In UCI’s world, I think what comes remotely close to Major Blast is Welcome Week where you get to go to those academic departmental open houses. This school continues to fascinate me.
Day 67: My Work Wifey asked me to go with her to Pilates today. (S/O to Club Pilates). Now many folks know I hate working out and I dislike activities that exert too much energy out of me but are not fun, but I actually really enjoyed Pilates. It was a really fun experience. It’s different from other activities I have done before and this was a good one.
Day 68: This is going to sound either strange or terrible, but… today is the first day in a very long time (essentially, since I started working) that I have gotten the chance to really sit back a little and breathe as I do work. Yes, that means I have been pushing myself really hard at work.
Over this weekend, I got to go to UCLA’s University Catholic Center and experience going to church again after being away for a while. I miss UCI’s Catholic Community, but I do appreciate having a new Catholic Community to partake in.
Week 14: Who got me sick?
Day 69: I may have started my sickness on this day. I don’t actually know how I made it through Monday meeting today when i was dreadful.
Day 70: This morning, I got to backup dance during our ResLife Department meeting. Then! “Haunted Hill” One of UCLA On Campus Housing Council’s (OCHC) big events in the year is called Haunted Hill where they turn a full floor of one of the buildings into a full-on, fully decorated, costume prepared Halloween maze. Think Halloween Horror Nights, but on a smaller scale and in a smaller environment. Now for those who know me well, know that I absolutely hate Halloween, scary movies, or really anything remotely related to Halloween. Just not my cup of tea. I wanted to try and be a brave soul by trying to go into the maze, but when I left my building to grab dinner with another ARD, I heard some wild screaming and all I said was “NOPE.” Mind you, My RD tried to convince me to go. Stuck to my original statement: “NOPE.” Maybe next year.
Day 72: I felt cool and accomplished because Work Wifey and I led our ARD meeting today. It’s not a big deal because every week, a new pair of ARDs facilitate meeting, but it was still cool and fun to do it
Day 73: I thought I was getting better from being sick this week, but turns out my body was still coming after me and had a very dreadful day today trying to work through all the things I had to get done. Whelp. On the flip side, it was a very accomplished week because all the 8 passive boards that needed to be completed for Courtside were completed by the Office Assistants (OAs) and they were all fabulous. Also, the Delta Terrace RD gave me a brilliant idea to schedule “Gelato Fridays” into my calendar, but I’ve yet to implement it.
…I need sleep. I made it through my first True Bruin Welcome (Welcome Week/Week 0), diving into the heavy RGC workload of Week 1, and the completion of Week 2 – firsts of actually everything. I made it through the week and got a fever over Friday night and was bed rest all weekend, but at least I was able to finish all of season 4 of Arrow. Binge watching at its finest. All so wanted was to get better so that I could be ready for birthday week!
Until next time,
ARD Jamrensze “J-Mi” De Leon